The anticipated boost to British advertising from the soccer World Cup tournament has failed to materialise, according to latest figures from media agency Carat.

The Aegis division's Global Market Update has forecast UK adspend growth for 2006 at 3.2%, down from its initial 4.5% prediction, and well below the 5.5% increase in 2005.

Sluggish spending on UK television, newspaper and radio advertising is also the main reason behind Carat's revision of growth estimates for Europe, down from 4.8% to 4.5%, showing a static market.

Comments Nigel Sharrocks, ceo of UK and Ireland at Aegis Media: "We are seeing good growth in UK online and outdoor advertising. Everything else is really struggling."

Germany - which is hosting the month-long soccerfest - is expected to see ad revenues grow by 2.1% this year, with France expecting a 2.7% rise. Italy's growth is forecast at 3.4% and Spain's at 4.6%.

The global picture is somewhat sunnier, with adspend growth predicted to be 5.7%, bolstered by a China's 20% rise.

The internet is contributing strongly to overall spend with a predicted 25% year-on-year increase in 2006. Ageis Group ceo Robert Lerwill says digital media is the real growth driver: "Investment in digital media has now definitely moved from experimental to essential."

Data sourced from BrandRepublic (UK); additional content by WARC staff